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Interview with IBF Junior Middleweight
Champion Winky Wright
Oct 19, 2003
By Ed Ludwig, Doghouse Boxing Exclusive

On November 8th from the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV current IBF Junior Middleweight Champion Ronald “Winky” Wright (45-3 25 KO’s) will defend his title for the fourth time when he meets Angel Hernandez (26-4 16 KO’s) in the co-feature to the Roy Jones, JR. vs. Antonio Tarver Light Heavyweight clash. Wright has been waiting patiently for the ever elusive big fight that could make him more of a household name amongst boxing fans not to mention millions of dollars.

While he waits for the Kassim Ouma vs. JC Candelo winner Wright has opted for an optional defense against Hernandez. I would like to thank the champ for taking the time to speak with Doghouse Boxing.

EL: How's training camp been as you prepare for the Angel Hernandez bout?

WR: It’s been good and I have been training for about a month and a half after it’s all said and done.

EL: Are you primed and ready for Hernandez?

WR: I am primed and ready. Like you said to me once it is hard to get up and be motivated for a fight like this, but knowing what lies ahead I have to be ready. Winning this fight is what motivates me because I want my shot.

EL: Are you hoping that Ouma and Candelo will fight soon so you can take care of your mandatory and start looking ahead?

WR: I hope it will be soon as I want to fight Oscar De La Hoya, Fernando Vargas, Shane Mosley or Bernard Hopkins.

EL: I spoke to Shane briefly during a press conference a few days after his victory over De La Hoya and the question was asked about his future and whom he wants to fight. Mosley said in order De La Hoya, Vernon Forrest, Ricardo Mayorga, Fernando Vargas and then a possible fight against you. I know he said to you before that he would give you a shot if he won and you are still on the outside looking in. How do you feel now?

WR: None of those guys have a belt in the division and now he wants to run around and eventually get to me. I am not worried about it anymore because my time will come. I really want to fight Oscar.

EL: Many of the top guys are avoiding you and this has been a never ending story so is it hard for you to keep that desire or are you still driven and motivated knowing that your time will come?

WR: I deserve my shot and I am not some guy that was thrown into the top of the rankings for no reason. It’s frustrating, but I just have to keep winning and hope something happens.

EL: What’s going on with Jones and Tarver and the ring entrance issue?

WR: They are still discussing it and I hope it won’t be called off. Roy wants to go into the ring second and be announced second as well. He feels he is the champ and it should be done that way.

EL: Assuming Roy beats Tarver will he stay at Light Heavyweight or move back up to heavyweight?

WR: He’s going back to Heavyweight. Beyond that I am not really sure of his plans.

EL: There is a rumor floating around of a possible match-up between Roy and Mike Tyson sometime next year. Is there any truth to that?

WR: I don’t really know anything about that.

EL: Once again your name is popping up as a potential opponent for Bernard Hopkins should he defeat William Joppy. Have you heard anything?

WR: I have been hearing it and he has said it a lot in the past. I would love to fight him at 160 and I would love to fight him for the Middleweight title because I feel I can beat him.

EL: Who is the one opponent you want in the ring the most?

WR: Oscar! Next would have been Shane, but I don’t like the way everybody says they will fight me and when they get their just due then they don’t want to fight me. Shane is a household name, but before he fought Oscar he was not a household name even though some people knew who he was. He got his opportunity when Oscar gave him his chance and now I need my chance and nobody will give it to me.

EL: The proposed bout between Fernando Vargas and Javier Castillejo appears to be in limbo as reports have Castillejo asking for too much money and that Daniel Santos could be a replacement. Vargas has called you out on many occasions yet we hear no mention of your name now.

WR: They need to fight someone like Santos, but me fighting Vargas now would be going backwards. I need to fight someone with a name. I have beaten everyone without a name and now it’s time for the fighters with a name to step it up and fight me.

EL: This question is a little off topic, but I wanted to know your thoughts on professional boxers entering the K-1 Mixed Martial Arts tournaments? Butterbean and Frans Botha have fought already and neither fared too well and now Botha will challenge Bob Sapp in December.

WR: No, I don’t think it’s a good idea because the MMA guys fight their asses off and they are straight all around fighters and we are boxers and that why it’s called boxing and not fighting. The MMA guys can really fight and so can we, but that’s a different style all together and boxers that go into it could get seriously hurt.

EL: Any final words?

WR: I’m still hopeful that things work out and I get a few big fights and really prove myself. I’ve had almost fifty fights and eventually I just want to move on and do something else.

EL: Thanks for your time and best of luck on November 8th.

WR: Thanks and take care.

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